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Capitol riot's suspected "bullhorn lady" Rachel Powell taken into custody

House holds hearing on domestic terrorism
House holds hearing on domestic terrorism in the wake of Capitol siege 08:01

Rachel Powell, a single mother of eight suspected of playing a role in the assault on the U.S. Capitol, was taken into custody in Pennsylvania on Thursday night, federal authorities confirmed to CBS News on Friday. The FBI raided her home Thursday searching for evidence to help build a case against her, CBS Pittsburgh reports.

Neighbors say Powell and some of the younger children hadn't been seen for a week or more.

Powell faces multiple charges, including violent entry or disorderly conduct, obstruction and depredation of government property. She made a brief appearance by video conference before a federal magistrate Friday afternoon, and she was ordered to remain in custody until her next hearing on Tuesday.

Powell turned herself in after learning she was facing criminal charges, her attorney, Michael Engle, told the Associated Press. "She wanted to turn herself in to face these charges and address them head-on," he said.

Engle said he was reviewing the allegations against Powell and didn't comment on them.

Until Thursday, the FBI had declined to even call Powell a suspect and offered only a short statement, indicating the agency secured a search warrant for the raid on the house and that they were looking for her.

"We are conducting court-authorized law enforcement activity at that location. We are seeking the whereabouts of Rachel Powell," the FBI said.

Powell can clearly be seen in videos taking a battering ram to the Capitol during the January 6 assault.

She's become known as "the bullhorn lady" who seemed to have knowledge of the Capitol building's floor plan. She was seen on video instructing insurrectionists on where to go.

Powell is of special concern to federal investigators because if she had that knowledge, it could indicate the assault was pre-planned.

But Powell denies it in a piece in The New Yorker magazine.

The FBI had posted pictures of her, seeking the public's help.

Neighbors were shocked by the raid and the reasons for it.

"It's crazy. We're Republican but we'd never do something like that. Biden's the president right now. Live with it. Get over it," Teresa Chisholm remarked to CBS Pittsburgh.

Brandi Kellam and Clare Hymes contributed reporting.

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